8.1/10
300,027
337 user 125 critic

Life of Brian (1979)

R | | Comedy | 17 August 1979 (USA)
Brian is born on the original Christmas, in the stable next door. He spends his life being mistaken for a messiah.

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2,264 ( 14)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
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Jesus
Neil Innes ...
A Weedy Samaritan
...
John Young ...
...
Sue Jones-Davies ...
Peter Brett
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Storyline

The story of Brian of Nazareth, born on the same day as Jesus of Nazareth, who takes a different path in life that leads to the same conclusion. Brian joins a political resistance movement aiming to get the Romans out of Judea. Brian scores a victory of sorts when he manages to paint political slogans on an entire wall in the city of Jerusalem. The movement is not very effective but somehow Brian becomes a prophet and gathers his own following. His fate is sealed however and he lives a very short life. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A motion picture destined to offend nearly two thirds of the civilized world. And severely annoy the other third. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

17 August 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Monty Python's Life of Brian  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$140,034, 19 August 1979, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$20,045,115

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$36,045,115
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Several scenes were filmed involving a group of Jewish zealots led by a psychopath named Otto, whose symbol was a combination of the Nazi swastika and a Star of David. The scenes were cut from the film during post-production, largely because several cast members decided that an analogy of Nazism and extreme Zionism, even if played for laughs, was too incendiary for a movie that was already going to be extremely controversial. In "The Pythons Autobiography by The Pythons," Terry Gilliam, said he thought it should have stayed, saying "Listen, we've alienated the Christians, let's get the Jews now." Idle himself was said to have been uncomfortable with the character. "It's essentially a pretty savage attack on rabid Zionism, suggesting it's rather akin to Nazism, which is a bit strong to take, but certainly a point of view". Michael Palin's personal journal entries from the period when various edits of Brian were being test-screened consistently reference the Pythons' and filmmakers' concerns that the Otto scenes were slowing the story down and thus were top of the list to be chopped from the final cut of the film. However, Oxford Brookes University historian David Nash says the removal of the scene represented "a form of self-censorship" and the Otto sequence "which involved a character representative of extreme forms of Zionism" was cut "in the interests of smoothing the way for the film's distribution in America." See more »

Goofs

The number of Roman guards searching the PFJ headquarters changes as they enter and leave the house. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Wise Man #1: Ahem!
Brian's mother: Oh!
[falls over in chair]
Brian's mother: Who are you?
Wise Man #2: We are three wise men.
Brian's mother: What?
Wise Man #1: We are three wise men.
Brian's mother: Well, what are you doing creeping around a cow shed at two o'clock in the morning? That doesn't sound very wise to me.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits are presented as an elaborate Terry Gilliam animated sequence of Roman temples being destroyed. See more »

Connections

Featured in De wereld draait door: Episode #6.170 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Bright Side Of Life
Music by Eric Idle
Arranged by John Altman
Sung by Eric Idle and chorus (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Classic seamless comedy.
14 January 2005 | by See all my reviews

This film is by far the best of the Python outings. It ranks as one of my favorite films of all time, which unlike 'The Holy Grail', hasn't dated with time but improves with repeated viewing.

The Pythons supposed take on Christianity, which caused outrage when it was first released (mostly by people who hadn't seen it), is actually a take on cults, both religious and political, and the people who follow them.

Brian, our hapless hero, is confused, horny, and constantly mistaken for the Messiah; who just happened to be born in the manger next to him. Brian just wants to be left alone, and to pursue his love for Judith, a member of the People's Front of Judea. Judith just wants the Romans to go home; but only after they've left the sanitation, the medicine, education, irrigation, roads, public order, etc., etc. ... oh and don't forget the wine!

Will Brian's love for Judith go unrequited? Will only the cheese makers be blessed, or does this refer to all manufacturers of dairy products? And just what have the Romans ever done for us?

It's subtle; it's anarchic; and it's possibly still banned in Norway. This is classic seamless comedy at its best. 10/10.


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